House Dems Unveil Universal Access Health Plan

House Democrats have taken their failed individual market reform from last year and raised it. Their new plan unveiled today guarantees access to all Michigan citizens and expands the MI Child program.

“The plan is completely different from last year,” Rep. Marc CORRIVEAU (D-Northville) said at a press conference. “. . . Last year, we addressed the safety net. Now we’re fixing and expanding it.”

Corriveau was introduced by Rep. Mark MEADOWS (D-East Lansing) as “one of the most respected health care experts” not just in Michigan, but across the country.

Whereas last session’s bills that died in Conference Committee primarily dealt with Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM), this legislation covers individual, large-group and small-group reform, Corriveau said. The Democrats did not release detailed plans of their policy, but gave an overview.

The plan creates the Michigan Catastrophic Protection Plan (MICAPP) Fund that will pay all health care costs above $25,000 per person, per year. Corriveau said this would apply to less than 5,000 patients each year and be funded by the private insurers. Corriveau said this is “completely different” from the high-risk pool last year which deals with the front end and would have given rates based on a person’s risk. The catastrophic fund deals on the back end and doesn’t kick in unless a person is over the limit.

Democrats argue this will lower costs to everyone. They argue that the number of uninsured is rising as more people lose their jobs and employers shed coverage to cut costs.

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